ARC is a movement of formerly incarcerated individuals, advocates, and allies committed to transforming the justice system and improving reentry outcomes.

WHERE IT ALL BEGAN.  While ARC was founded in 2013, its roots can be traced back to 2003, when founder Scott Budnick first stepped into Barry J. Nidorf Juvenile Hall. At the time, Scott worked in the film industry as Executive Vice President of Green Hat Films, where he produced numerous successful comedies, including The Hangover series. A friend in the industry invited Scott to attend a writing workshop at the juvenile hall through the InsideOUT Writers (IOW) program.

Scott sat alongside incarcerated youth in the Compound, including some as young as 15 years old, who were facing adult prison sentences - including one boy who was facing more than 200 years in prison. In their writings, he learned of the terrible decisions they had made, but also of their childhoods, marked by trauma, violence, and neglect. That day, Scott committed to mentoring incarcerated youth, and has since conducted regular writing classes in the facility.

Over the years, as Scott's students were released from juvenile halls and prisons across California, he witnessed many of them returning to incarceration, unable to overcome the challenges of reentry due to the lack of community and support that led them into the system in the first place.

ARC began as an annual camping trip bringing together a few dozen formerly incarcerated young people with positive mentors to offer encouragement, guidance, and resources. Today, the Coalition has grown into a support and advocacy network of more than 300 members, and hundreds of volunteer mentors and allies, committed to helping one another through reentry, and advocating for a fairer criminal justice system.


THE COALITION TODAY

Today, ARC serves nearly 350 formerly incarcerated men and women, who commit to living crime-free, gang-free and drug-free; enrolling in school, working, or actively searching for work; and being of service to their community. The majority of ARC members live in Los Angeles County, where the organization was founded. Over the past three years, ARC has expanded its network to also include members in Orange, Riverside, and San Bernardino Counties, as well as Sacramento and the San Francisco Bay Area. In September 2016, ARC opened a second office in Sacramento County, and is now providing reentry and supportive services to 65 formerly incarcerated young people in the region.

The success of ARC’s model is evidenced by the exceedingly low recidivism rate of less than five percent from members, compared to California’s recidivism rate of nearly 60 percent. ARC’s advocacy efforts have also been exceptionally successful, leading to numerous reforms in California’s justice system that have drastically improved the way the system treats young people. These reforms, which have affected more than 20,000 incarcerated individuals across the state, include limiting the practice of sentencing juveniles to life without the possibility of parole, and providing second chances to individuals who committed their crimes as youth and received adult prison sentences. 

Scott Budnick is the most extraordinary force in the state of California on badly needed incarceration and justice reform.
— Dr. Robert K. Ross, President of The California Endowment

ARC STAFF

JOEL AGUILAR
Resident Advisor, ARC Housing 

 

SCOTT BUDNICK
Founder and President

CAITLIN AHEARN
Development Director

 

CARLOS CERVANTES
Ride Home and Mentorship Coordinator

ZEARA ALVAREZ-VERDUGO
Manager, ARC Housing

 

NORMA CUMPIAN
Life Coach

CHERYL BONACCI
Director of Communications

 

PRESTON A. DAGONS JR
Program Coordinator, ARC Housing

 
 

WILFRED LOPEZ 
Life Coach, ARC Housing

 

VICTOR  MALIN JR.
Sacramento Member Coordinator

 

JOSE GONZALES
Inside Coordinator

 

BLAIR JAMES
Director of Counseling Services

 

KENT MENDOZA
Community Relations Coordinator

 

SAM LEWIS
Senior Member Services Manager

 

CHRISTINE MAMMOLITO
Deputy Director

 

Esteban Nuñez
Life Coach/Development Assistant

 

ISAAC LOPEZ
Life Coach

 

JOHN McCLELLAND
Housing Director

 

BIKILA OCHOA
Policy Director

 

MISTY OKA 
Executive Coordinator

 

ADRIAN VASQUEZ
Intake Specialist and Job Developer

 

BEN YANO
Chief of Staff

 

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Charity Chandler
Director of Contracts Administration
AIDS Healthcare Foundation

Robert Downey Jr.
Actor & Activist

Dede Gardner
President
Plan B Entertainment

Michael Goldstein
Attorney, Goldstein Law Offices
President, Los Angeles County Criminal Courts Bar Association

Adam Gunther
Philanthropist

Ron Kaye
Attorney
Kaye, McLane, Bednarski & Litt, LLP

Damon Lindelof
Film & Television Writer/Producer

Mike Romano
Director
Stanford Law School Three Strikes Project

Todd Rubenstein
Lawyer
Morris Yorn

Javier Stauring
Director
Healing Justice Coalition

Michael Stubbs, Chairman
Philanthropist                                      

Franky Carrillo, Vice Chair
Student, Loyola Marymount University

David Muhammad, Vice Chair                
National Institute for Criminal Justice Reform

Carol Biondi, Secretary
Commissioner
Los Angeles County Commission for Children & Families

Paul Blavin, Treasurer
Philanthropist and Investor

Brent Bolthouse
Bolthouse Productions/The Bungalow

Scott Budnick
Founder and President
The Anti-Recidivism Coalition

Alex Busansky
Founder
Impact Justice

Elizabeth Calvin
Senior Advocate
Children's Rights Division, Human Rights Watch

Matthew Cate
Executive Director
California State Association of Counties

 


ADVISORY BOARD

 

Jonah Hill
Actor & Comedian                                                          

B. Wayne Hughes Jr.
Founder, Serving California

Nasir “Nas” Jones
Recording Artist

Bruce Karatz
Owner
BK Capital LLC

Eric Kessler
Arabella Advisors

Ben Lear
Filmmaker

Greg Propper
Co-Founder, Propper Daley

Rep. Raul Ruiz, M.D.
United States Congressman
for California’s 36th District

Mike Tollin
Film & Television Producer

Anthony Williams
Director of Government Relations
Boeing

James Anderson    
Founding Member, Anti-Recidivism Coalition(ARC)          
Founder, Los Mayores

Aaron Bergman
Director of Corporate Sponsorships
Communities in Schools Los Angeles

Kafi Blumenfield
Executive Director
Discovery Cube Los Angeles

Mike Brady
President/CEO,
Professional Training Institute, Inc.

Rep. Tony Cardenas
United States Congressman
for California’s 29th District

Common
Recording Artist

Zach Galifianakis
Actor & Comedian

Jake Gyllenhaal
Actor & Activist

Hon. Eric Harmon
Judge, Superior Court of Los Angeles County

Hill Harper
Actor, Author & Philanthropist